Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Shark Island

I just spent a couple of days (more like a couple of hours it seemed) in Chuuk in the Federated States of Micronesia.  This was my second visit to Chuuk; I visited in 2008 for an environmental conference (for a program that I later quit because the CNMI made it their official position to give up on marine enforcement and just focus on outreach, something that I disagreed with).

By now, readers of this blog (both of you) are aware that I work for an organization unaffiliated with anything I may write here and focus on an issue related to charismatic megafauna that like to cuddle with their teeth.  I don't usually write about my work, but this particular trip had no political sensitivities, so I will blog away.

I was free on Saturday morning, so I made a reservation to get in a couple of dives.  Chuuk is known for wreck diving, but I was pleasantly surprised that they boast three shark dives within the Truk Lagoon.  Shark Island, the little sand cay in the top photo (and below, too), is a 15 minute boat ride north of Weno, the island with the airport and the hotels, and has a reef shark cleaning station in about 60 feet of water just off its shore.  During my visit I saw grey reefs, whitetip reefs, and blacktip reefs.

I'm going to get two stories out of this for work, so look for them in the coming months.  One is going to be about visiting Shark Island; the other is an interview with the manager of the dive shop.

I never realized until this trip how much beauty Chuuk has.  I can't wait to go back, and when I do, hopefully I'll remember to set my strobe settings so that it fires when I want.  Maybe by then I'll have convinced someone to buy me a housing for my 60D, too.  Until that time, here are some photos and a short video from my dive trip.

1 comment:

Bev said...

Looks like you had a great trip! Loved the pictures of the sharks! I'm hoping to get back in the water soon=)